PLEASURE Beach bosses expect thousands more families will pour through the gates after unveiling a £10m cash injection.
There were celebrations taking place at the South Shore attraction today after the fun park clinched a deal with entertainment giant Nickelodeon to create a six-acre plot dedicated to the channel's favourite characters.
Spongebob Squarepants and Dora The Explorer will welcome children on 14 new rides after investment was clinched with Blackpool Council and the Pleasure Beach for the new attraction which will open next April.
More than 270 jobs will be created in a UK first for Nickelodeon who told The Gazette they chose Blackpool for its "family values".
Nick Thompson, deputy managing director for the Pleasure Beach, said: "This really is exciting news for the attraction and Blackpool as a whole.
"There will be new rides, attractions and of course the stars of world-famous TV characters.
"The investment has been from the business and other funding sources.
"It's an exciting time for everyone involved in this project and I can't wait for it to open."
Kiaran Saunders, vice-president and commercial director for Nickelodeon UK, said: "We looked at a number of towns but Blackpool is a national treasure and its family values meant there was no other place for it to be.
"The characters and Blackpool will hit it off perfectly."
Blackpool Council stumped up half the funding for the deal in way of a business loan.
Coun Peter Callow, council leader, said: "This is a fantastic day for the Pleasure Beach and Blackpool as a whole. This ties in perfectly with our family-led objectives."
FOR MORE ON THIS STORY, AND ARTIST'S IMPRESSIONS, SEE TUESDAY'S GAZETTE.